Safety Tips for Walking on Ice

Winter in the Midwest can be the cause of many unintentional injuries.  If you have to be outside walking, here are a few safety tips to help avoid falling on the ice:

  1. Wear sturdy footwear with good traction.
  2. Wear a think, heavy coat. Any little bit of padding from the coat may help cushion you if you fall.
  3. Walk slowly, taking small steps.  Assume all surfaces will be slippery.
  4. Don’t walk with your hands in your pockets. And don’t carry extra items in your hands.  Leave your arms at your side, out slightly to help with balance.
  5. Stick to regular walkways that may be cleared or treated. Don’t try and take paths where you are not familiar with the terrain.
  6. Do not walk in the streets.  Remember, vehicles may be slipping or sliding as well and may run into you if they lose control. Or, if you fall in the street, a vehicle may not be able to stop in time.
  7. Wear reflective clothing.  Give drivers as much as notice as possible there’s a pedestrian so they can drive with caution.
  8. If you fall, try to fall “properly”.  We understand that it is a reflex, but if you can remember, a few pointers to lessen the potential impact include:
    1. Try to Tuck & Roll – try to not fall backwards landing on your back or hitting your head. Try to fall forward and slightly to the side.
    2. Do not try to catch yourself with your hands. This can easily lead to fractures in the hand or wrists.
    3. If you do manage to fall more to the side like a tuck and roll, keep your elbows in toward your side so you don’t land on your elbow.
  9. If you do fall and injury a body part, see a doctor.  The orthopedists at GIKK are experts at treating all muscle, bone and joint injuries. (For emergent injuries, please go to the emergency room.)

For additional information, or information about care for acute injuries via our walk-in clinic, call 402.399.8550.